You’re Invited! High school students and their parents are invited to attend our RIBN Information Session held at Lenoir-Rhyne University in the Belk Centrum Auditorium on Thursday, November 19th, 2015 from 6-7 pm. No registration required.


What is RIBN?

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The mission of Regionally Increasing Baccalaureate Nurses is to improve the health and health outcomes of North Carolinians by enhancing the educational preparation and diversity of the nursing workforce. The program provides a four-year nursing option that concurrently enrolls students in a community college – where students obtain their associate degree in nursing – and later, a university – where they complete their bachelor's degree in nursing.

Started in 2010, there are now eight regional RIBN partnerships across the state. Click here to watch a video about the value of the RIBN program.

The Hickory RIBN program dually admits students to Lenoir- Rhyne University and one of these five local community colleges that partner with the LRU College of Nursing.

  • Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute
  • Catawba Valley Community College
  • Mitchell Community College
  • Western Piedmont Community College
  • Wilkes Community College

Students in the RIBN Track:

  • Spend the first three years at the community college campus along with taking at least one course per semester at Lenoir-Rhyne University (most classes at LRU are online).
  • Receive their associate degree in nursing at the end of their third year.
  • After passing the state licensure exam, progress to the fourth year of the program.
  • Complete fourth-year course work online at Lenoir-Rhyne University.
  • Upon completion of their fourth year, receive their Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing from Lenoir-Rhyne University.  

What are the Advantages of RIBN for students?

  • Completion of BSN degree within four years.
  • Expanded career and educational opportunities.
  • An affordable way to receive a valuable baccalaureate degree.
  • Added support with a RIBN student success advocate available to assist program participants.
  • Option to work as a registered nurse during the fourth year.

Contact Us
Jordan Thomas, Hickory RIBN Student Success Advocate; 828-328-7213

RIBN is coordinated statewide by the Foundation for Nursing Excellence with financial support from the Duke Endowment, the Jonas Center for Nursing Excellence, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the NC Area Health Education Centers Program.

For more information about the statewide RIBN program, visit For more information on the background and funding of RIBN, visit the Foundation for Nursing Excellence website at


RIBN Admission Requirements

Students with less than 26 transferable college credit hours must meet the following criteria in order to be considered for the program:

  • A high school diploma or its equivalent plus satisfactory completion of the following course requirements:
    • Four units of English
    • Two units of a language other than English
    • One unit of American History
    • Three units of mathematics (algebra I, algebra II, and geometry). Other math such as statistics is encouraged but not required.
    • One unit of a laboratory science (other than Chemistry)
    • One Unit of Chemistry (Required) - must be within the last 5 years
  • Cumulative unweighted GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • An SAT score of a minimum of 500 in Critical Reading and 500 in Math OR ACT score of a minimum 22 in English/Reading and 22 in Math
  • A Test of Essential Academic Skills exam (TEAS V ®) score at or above the Proficient level or a minimum of 63 points (Click here for TEAS V registration information)
  • A completed application to the community college

Students with 26 or more transferable college credit hours should contact the RIBN Student Success Advocate for eligibility requirements.


How to apply to RIBN

We will begin accepting applications September 1st, 2015 for the RIBN class that begins fall semester 2016. All applications and supplemental items are due to the Student Success Advocate by March 1st, 2016.

Please follow these instructions to apply during the application period:

  1. Complete the designated community college admission application. Note: This is a different application than the Lenoir-Rhyne RIBN application. You must complete both the application for Lenoir-Rhyne RIBN and for the respective community college you will be attending.
  2. Submit your official high school transcript, all official college transcripts, and official SAT or ACT scores to the community college admissions office by March 1st.
  3. Complete the online RIBN admission application and send all high school transcripts, all official college transcripts, official SAT or ACT scores, and TEAS-V scores by March 1st to:

Jordan Thomas
Lenoir-Rhyne University
P.O. Box 7292
Hickory, NC 28603

Acceptance is competitive. After meeting all RIBN program admission requirements, applicants will be ranked numerically based on the following criteria:

  • GPA is weighted as 25% of the score
  • SAT or ACT score is weighted as 25% of the score
  • TEAS V ® (Test of Essential Academic Skills) Exam is weighted as 50% of the score

Upon acceptance into the Hickory RIBN program, the student will be required to submit a deposit and application fee for LRU. Applicants with disabilities should contact the coordinator of disability services at their respective community college campus.

Students will be notified of their acceptance in the spring semester. Preference is given to North Carolina residents. If you are not a North Carolina resident, you will only be considered in the event that vacancies occur after June.


RIBN Tuition and Fees

The RIBN program was built with both quality and affordability in mind. RIBN is an innovative way to earn a highly valuable baccalaureate nursing degree at extremely affordable rates. Students pay community college tuition for the first three years (in addition to paying for at least one course per semester at LRU). All classes at Lenoir-Rhyne University are at the Life Long Learning tuition rate, which tend to be cheaper than on-campus rates. Financial aid is available for those students who need additional assistance. 

Please contact the admissions office at your choice of community college for specific financial aid information.

Loans and Scholarships

  • Forgivable Education Loan for Service
  • Nurse Corps


RIBN Quick Links

RIBN Student Disclosure Form
TEAS-V Registration Information
Application - Applications and all supplemental items are due March 1st, 2016
Wilkes Community College Admission Packet - Students interested in applying to Wilkes should review this packet carefully for adjusted deadlines and admission requirements
Download a PDF Version of Admission Requirements
Meet the Student Success Advocate
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